Ronaldo hat-trick seals second Club World Cup in three years for Los Blancos

The Portuguese star was the main man to win the title for Real Madrid.

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Cristiano Ronaldo scored three goals, including two in extra time to hand Real Madrid their second Club World Cup title in three years. They beat Japanese champions Kashima Antlers 4-2 after extra time to once again prove why they were voted the Club of the 20th Century.

Madrid went ahead early in the first half from a Karim Benzema goal, only for the Antlers to equalize at the stroke of half time. The Antlers had looked out of the game for long periods, with the Madrid duo of Toni Kroos and Luka Modric dominating the game. However, the Japanese champions looked the hungrier of the two sides, and playing in front of their home crowd they no doubt wanted to prove a point or two. In the second half, the Kashima Antlers would take a shock 2-1 lead.

Madrid would finally wake up after the goal, and then went on one attack after another and dominated the possession. The Antlers were mostly reduced to counter attacks. Madrid would find their break through, with Ronaldo stepping up to slot home a penalty after a foul in the penalty area. Both teams had chances to win the game in regulation but neither could break the deadlock.

In extra time, the fitness and skill of the European Champions came to the fore as Madrid were clinical and decisive. With quality coming off the bench, Madrid ran out easy winners in the end. Cristiano Ronaldo would score two more goals in the extra period to put the game beyond any doubt. This was Madrid’s second FIFA world title, after winning the same trophy back in 2014. Coach Zinedine Zidane was all praise for his star man, claiming Ronaldo always delivers in big games and when it really matters. With the win, Madrid also extended their unbeaten run and won their second trophy of the season and third for the year.

Photo by CDeahr23

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